Dental Fear no More
Overcoming Dental Fear
Does the thought of going to the dentist fill you with fear? Do you put off dental treatment until the last possible moment? If so you’re not alone! It’s certainly nothing to feel ashamed of.
In fact dental fear is incredibly common. It is estimated that up to half the Australian population experience some level of dental fear.
Dr Wilfred Koon, principal dentist at The Point Dental, is passionate about helping people shed their dental fear. After knocking out both his front baby teeth at a very young age and getting screamed at by an uncaring dentist in the chair, Dr Koon understands only too well why many people have dental fear.
“Most dental phobias are caused by a bad dental experience in the past,” explains Dr Koon. “Bad dental experience is not always physical, it can also be psychological, such as being humiliated, or feeling disappointed with past dental work.”
Fortunately for Dr Koon, he has met a few caring dentists during his childhood, who helped him overcome his dental fear easily, and inspired him to become the dentist he is today. “The good news for people with dental fear is that there are actually many wonderful dentists out there.”
If you have dental fear, Dr Koon recommends that you ask your neighbours, friends or family for recommendation on a good dentist, but do not delay any dental treatment.
“People with dental phobia will often do everything possible to avoid dental appointments. Unfortunately, delaying dental treatment can allow a small problem that is quick and easy to treat to develop into a much bigger issue.” Dr Koon finds this can reinforce their fear of the dentist, as after all they only visit when they are in discomfort.
Another thing that troubles Dr Koon is the effect poor dental health can have on general health. “We now know that people who neglect their dental health are more at risk of suffering from certain serious medical conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. This is because bacteria in the mouth can enter the body through infected gums or other untreated dental diseases.”
Many people still hold the belief that going to the dentist is a painful experience. In fact, the advancement in modern dentistry has made the dream of pain-free dentistry truly achievable.
“At The Point Dental, we truly believe that painful dental experience is that past, and the future is pain-free dentistry, and this is an experience we aim to deliver to our patients”, says Dr Koon.
If you are fearful of visiting the dentist then Dr Koon says sleep dentistry is definitely a great option to consider.
“Sleep dentistry or IV sedation is a safe and very effective procedure. Often patients can have an extensive amount of treatment completed in just one comfortable procedure, with little or no memory of their dental visit. This enables them to return to dental health more quickly and easily.”